[Federal Register: August 9, 1999 (Volume 64, Number 152)]
[Page 43207-43208]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Bureau of Reclamation

Fish and Wildlife Service

Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Central Valley, CA

AGENCIES: Bureau of Reclamation and Fish and Wildlife Service, 

ACTION: Addition of Fish and Wildlife Service as co-lead agency for 
Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement.


SUMMARY: The role of the Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) has been 
changed from cooperating to co-lead agency, as defined under the 
National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) pursuant to the Council on 
Environmental Quality regulations (40 CFR Parts 1500-1508), in on-going 
efforts to prepare the Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement 
(PEIS) on implementation of the Central Valley Project Improvement Act 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Alan Candlish, Bureau of Reclamation, 
2800 Cottage Way, Sacramento, California 95825, (916) 978-5197; or 
James McKevitt, Fish and Wildlife Service, 3310 El Camino Avenue, Suite 
130, Sacramento, California 95821-6340, (916) 979-2760.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On October 30, 1992, the President signed 
into law the Reclamation Projects Authorization and Adjustment Act of 
1992 (Pub. L. 102-575) that included Title XXXIV, the CVPIA. The CVPIA 
amends the previous authorizations of the California Central Valley 
Project (CVP) to include fish and wildlife protection, restoration, and 
mitigation as project purposes having equal priority with irrigation 
and domestic uses and fish and wildlife enhancement as a project 
purpose equal to power generation. The CVPIA identifies a number of 
specific measures to meet these new purposes and directs the Secretary 
of the Interior (Secretary) to operate the CVP consistent with these 
purposes, to meet the Federal trust responsibilities to protect the 
fishery resources of affected federally recognized Indian tribes, and 
to meet all requirements of Federal and California law and to achieve a 
reasonable balance among competing demands for use of

[[Page 43208]]

CVP water. Section 3409 directs the Secretary to complete a PEIS to 
analyze the direct and indirect impacts and benefits of implementing 
the CVPIA.
    On February 25, 1993, the Secretary approved a memorandum 
signifying roles of the Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) and the 
Service in regards to implementing the CVPIA. The Service's role was 
defined as having ``* * *primary responsibility for decisions on 
biological resource issues; for studies on fish and wildlife, their 
populations and habitat requirements; for fishery restoration program 
direction; and for the planning, design, and decisions on the 
administration of fish and wildlife facilities.'' Because of this 
language and other specifications in the CVPIA, the Service began 
implementing, in an interim manner and jointly with Reclamation, 
provisions of the CVPIA which met the definition of its responsibility. 
It also began participating in efforts to complete the PEIS for 
implementing the CVPIA, supporting complete environmental analysis of 
long-term program implementation efforts for both Reclamation and the 
    Since 1993, the Service has participated in efforts leading to 
release of the Draft PEIS for the CVPIA in 1997. Efforts to date 
suggest the Service was more a de-facto co-lead agency than cooperating 
agency. Service efforts included such things as attending public and 
agency meetings, providing responses from the Department of the 
Interior perspective on fish and wildlife issues; participating in 
decisions regarding assumptions, model usage, and analysis in the PEIS; 
and participating in preparation of documentation. Additionally, 
possible programmatic-level actions that the Service might take to 
implement the CVPIA were discussed and evaluated during scoping 
processes associated with completion of the draft NEPA document.

    Dated: July 24, 1999.
Michael J. Spear,
Manager, California/Nevada Operations Office, Fish and Wildlife 

    Dated: July 30, 1999.
Kirk C. Rodgers,
Acting Regional Director, Mid-Pacific Region, Bureau of Reclamation.
[FR Doc. 99-20385 Filed 8-6-99; 8:45 am]